Vietnam-what would you carry?


April 30, 2007, 07:19 PM
It seems everyone keeps asking this question, but sticks with WWII. How about we bring it a little more recent. If you were in Vietnam, what personal weapon would you carry? You can pick either US or NVA weapons.
Have Fun!!:D

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April 30, 2007, 07:23 PM
I would have carried an AK-47 and a Colt 1911 45.

Vern Humphrey
April 30, 2007, 07:24 PM
My first tour in Viet Nam, I was an adviser. Our standard weapon was the M2 carbine -- no choice unless you were a colonel or above. My carbine got wrapped around a tree, and I borrowed an M1 rifle from the ARVN and carried that for the rest of my tour. I also carried a privately-owned Colt M357, which I used twice. I picked up a few other guns along the way, including a Colt Cobra and a Colt Python (with 2 1/2" barrel).

My second tour, I was a rifle company commander, and carried the issue M1911A1. I bullied my battalion commander into getting me a pair of M14 sniper rifles (pre-M21) and gave one to the only trained sniper I had in the company, and kept the other for myself.

April 30, 2007, 07:25 PM
M14 and 1911A1

Dad carried an M1 and a 1911A1.

High Planes Drifter
April 30, 2007, 07:27 PM
Either an AK, or an M1A. 1911A1 as sidearm.

BTW - I like your sigline.

April 30, 2007, 07:29 PM
A Douglas A-1E Skyraider, loaded for bear, orbiting my position 24 hours a day.
Now THAT is personal protection!!

April 30, 2007, 07:29 PM
Slr and browning High power 9mm

Ron James
April 30, 2007, 07:33 PM
I would use what I used on all of my tours there. What the Army issued me. However not being authorized a side arm I did pick up a nice High Power from a SF friend on my last trip.

The Unknown User
April 30, 2007, 07:34 PM
Primary: M14
Secondary: 1911

April 30, 2007, 07:36 PM
Custom Remington 700 long action chambered for 6.5 X 300 WWH topped with a twenty power Unertl scope. Eat lots of fish and rice, lay off the pogey bait don't wash with scented soap or use deoderant. Sleep high in trees in the daytime.

Joe Demko
April 30, 2007, 07:38 PM
I would go with the general issue weapons. The advantages of common magazines, ammunition, and repair parts are not things I would lightly surrender.

April 30, 2007, 07:40 PM
Back then I was "given", first, an M1 carbine, later an M16A1. Pistols were S&W M15 with FMJ 130 gr ball.

Never had much use for the carbine other than handiness. Didn't care for it as a weapon before, during, or after my service time. The M16 type weapons are relatively ok now but back then...? The only time I went to use mine it malfunctioned which did not inspire any confidence. Had I had the option I would have loved an M14. Exactly the reverse of the carbine in every respect; still my #1 choice in the M1A persuasion.

I had some Keith-like loads for the M15 (smuggled over) , but would have much preferred a nice loose old 1911 if given half a chance.

Pretty big disconnect between those who mandate what you get and those out there on the sharp end. Not much new there.

April 30, 2007, 07:45 PM
I would have carried an AK-47 and a Colt 1911 45.

me three!

CSA 357
April 30, 2007, 07:46 PM
:) mod 12 winchester and a 1911 45 acp

April 30, 2007, 07:46 PM
Either an AK-47, SKS, MAT-49, or whatever else the local NVA regiment could drum up. As a mid 20's healthy male of Vietnamese descent, I would have likely been shooting at you guys. :o

April 30, 2007, 07:55 PM
I carried and slept with a S&W Model 15 .38sp Combat Masterpiece. Wish I still had it.

April 30, 2007, 07:55 PM
My uncle was in Special Forces and had a prototype Glock 17. :neener:

Brother in Arms
April 30, 2007, 07:58 PM
M14 would have been nice for penetration, power and reliability.

If I had to carry an M16 variant a XM177 would have been a little bit better, at least it would be light and short.

M37 Ithaca Riot gun would also have been nice for those close engadgments or M1897 trench gun.

for a sidearm a 1911A1 or M1917 S&W revolver

If had to carry a sumachinegun a PPSH with stick magazine or a Swedish-K would probably be pretty good.

An M79 would also be interesting.

Brother in Arms

4v50 Gary
April 30, 2007, 07:59 PM
Huntcast, I see your Skyraider and raise you one New Jersey on standby.

BTW, if I was in 'Nam and I'm grateful I wasn't as I was only a kiddie, it would be an AK-47 and a buncha grenades.

April 30, 2007, 08:01 PM
M14, and a 1911A1

April 30, 2007, 08:05 PM
AR-10 and M1911

Maybe the Australian 'Biach Gun'?

If i had to use an SMG, It would be an Aussie F1, French MAT 49/Hotchkiss Universal/Uzi.

If i was to use a GPMG, It would be a French AA-52.

Well the French were in Vietnam the decade before.

April 30, 2007, 08:30 PM
Back then I was "given", first, an M1 carbine, later an M16A1. Pistols were S&W M15 with FMJ 130 gr ball.

USAF by any chance?

April 30, 2007, 08:31 PM
AK47 and a 1911.

And a flight of BUFF's circling overhead! :D

Brian Williams
April 30, 2007, 08:46 PM
Ithaca 37 USGI trench gun
USGI 1911a1

Or a Rem 700 short action with a Win Mod 70 trigger guard, Unertl 10x or Redfield scope, walnut stock, in 308 and a 1911a1

OBTW the Glock 17 was not developed until 1980 and the Austrian army, the first users, adopted them in 1982, so you could not have had one in Vietnam

Brian Williams
April 30, 2007, 08:56 PM
When was the company started and the history behind it?
1963 - Glock GesmbH established in Deutsch-Wagram
1963 - Glock's first product: plastic curtain rods
1970s - Plastic kitchen boxes, machine gun ammo belts, shovels, and utility knives are offered.
1980 - Company founder Gaston Glock starts developing a gun
1982 - The Austrian army decides on the Glock 17
1984 - With service in the Norwegian army, the Glock leaves Austria
1986 - G18 introduced
1986 - Glock Inc. in Smyrna, GA, established
1988 - G17L and G19 introduced
1988 - All Glocks get serrated frontstraps and backstraps
1990 - G22 and G23 introduced: the first ever .40 S&W guns
1990 - G20 and G21 introduced
1994 - G24 introduced
1995 - G25, G26 and G27 introduced
1997 - G29 and G30 introduced
1998 - G31, G32, G33, G34, G35 introduced
1999 - G36 introduced

April 30, 2007, 09:01 PM
I carried a Browning P35 High Power in 9mm.

April 30, 2007, 09:08 PM

April 30, 2007, 09:29 PM
"...a 40 watt plasma rifle with...."

Sorry...couldn't resist :D

April 30, 2007, 09:35 PM
A radio with a squadron of B-52's on the other end.....but my mother will do in a pinch :D

Wild Weasel
April 30, 2007, 09:42 PM
My personal preference? An F105G loaded to the gills with sidewinders and sparrows and of course a 20 mm Vulcan in the nose.

April 30, 2007, 09:45 PM
alot of guys still carried it over there.
Spray and Pray with BIG and HEAVY slugs WORKS !:D
1911 sidearm with lots of extra mags.:cool:

April 30, 2007, 09:46 PM
'28A1 Thompson, a .45 Automatic, and a Ka-bar knife. Second choice for primary arm would be an Ithaca 12 gauge pump gun and some modern 000 buckshot.

April 30, 2007, 10:05 PM
m2 carbine and browning hi power.

Joe the Redneck
April 30, 2007, 10:27 PM
An M-16, I know how to use a cleaning kit.

April 30, 2007, 10:41 PM
M16 - worked then

Still keep a couple around now

April 30, 2007, 10:42 PM
Swedish K and a Browning Hi-Power and a few frags and claymores for things that go boom in the night;) .

April 30, 2007, 10:47 PM
AK-47 and plenty of toilet paper cuz I'd a been scared ****less!!

April 30, 2007, 10:57 PM
What would I carry?

Likely a clipboard and a Nikon...

April 30, 2007, 11:17 PM
bald Utter truth.....

probably nothing. b/c if faced with the choices open to draft age males at the time, i'd have done the same thing my father did. run for the nearest Air Force recruiting office, enlist for tech school and PRAY i got assigned to work on something flown by ADC (Air Defense Command). so that the odds were that the closest i'd ever get to Southeast Asia would be S. Korea! (this of course disregards the deployment of F-102s to Thailand early in the war)

Now if i was left no choice and HAD to go to vietnam, but could still choose my weapons, i'd probably have to say an XM-177 and a 1911A1

Heavy Metal Hero
April 30, 2007, 11:31 PM
My uncle was in Special Forces and had a prototype Glock 17.

1980 - Company founder Gaston Glock starts developing a gun

I knew I smelt BS.

Another vote for an AK-47 and a 1911.

April 30, 2007, 11:51 PM
My uncle was in Special Forces and had a prototype Glock 17. :neener:

I don't think he was being serious :D

Gimme a quality sub-gun and a BHP.
Maybe a mauser-style bolt rifle too.

April 30, 2007, 11:59 PM
Turreted Rhinmetall RMK-30 with canister rounds on a Wiesel. Maybe two on the turret... and I'm pretty sure they have dual-feeds, so the other would be feeding ... probably 30mm explosive shells. The vietcong had RPGs, so throw in some reactive armor.


You expect me to play fair?

EDIT: In hindsight, an A-10 Thunderbolt with 11 M260LWL rocket pods carrying 19 Hydra-70 rockets each (on top of the GAU-8a 'Avenger' gatling gun...) with APKWS II laser guidance heads (Program cancelled Febuary 2007. Happy birthday indeed.)

Optional are nuke-tipped Hydra rockets with fractional-kiloton yield.

May 1, 2007, 12:03 AM
A Thompson and an M79 with HE, Buckshot and Flechette rounds.

May 1, 2007, 12:14 AM
Puff, Spooky, Arc Light, Dust Off and a radio, green towel and green underwear. Someone else to carry my Ruck and dig those bunkers and walk point and LP.

"Our Foundation of Freedom Makes Everything Else Possible in America!!!,,,That Foundation is Made up of Veterans!!!"

May 1, 2007, 12:59 AM
AK-47 and a 1911.

May 1, 2007, 01:09 AM
Stoner 63A LMG and M-1911A1

May 1, 2007, 01:19 AM
Springfield M14 and a Colt 1911A1 -- or a M21 when needed--

May 1, 2007, 01:22 AM
m14 & 1911a1 served me well and brought me home
68 & 69

May 1, 2007, 01:26 AM
what were the ballistics of our .38 loading? How about the .357? Was it ever an official cartridge? (I never see much written about the .357 in service).
And since we have the real deal here, has anyone carried BOTH the M14 and the M16? If so what did you prefer and why? What were your problems with each?

May 1, 2007, 01:32 AM
Primary : Colt XM-177

Secondary : Colt M1911A1

Pick up weapon : AK-47

Jorg Nysgerrig
May 1, 2007, 01:36 AM
While I have no idea how well it actually works, I've always thought that 40mm pump grenade launcher developed at China Lake was pretty cool.

May 1, 2007, 01:40 AM
A friend of mine was a combat medic in 'nam and had a buddy (distant blood relation?) that managed to score him a grenade launcher. Apparently, he was sent on a lot of patrols with marines and they liked him ;) I'd gol with the M79 too.

May 1, 2007, 01:45 AM
I'm with those who picked an AK-47 and a 1911 45acp.

May 1, 2007, 01:52 AM
preferably a passport and wad of cash instead of a draft card.

Oh right - Para-Ord double stack .45 with C7A2 rifle.

May 1, 2007, 02:30 AM
I had a Car 15 and a 1911A1 strapped into an AH1G with 38 10#ers out-board, 20 17#ers in-board, with 3000 rnds of .308 and 50 rnds of 40mm in the ammo bay feeding the turret. Plus a wingman equally armed.

Life was GOOD!!!:evil:


May 1, 2007, 02:38 AM
To all of you who served a very big thank you!

I would if given a choice go with the M14 with the Leatherwood ART II scope its weight would not bother me nor its recoil.
If I could get hold of a pistol it would be a 1911A1

Ala Dan
May 1, 2007, 04:32 AM
I probably would opt for an M-14 7.62 NATO (.308 Winchester) as well as
my primary; with a Colt 1911A1 as a secondary weapon, and a old model
Smith & Wesson model 60 (.38 Special) tucked away in my rucksack as
an added life insurance policy~! ;) :D

May 1, 2007, 04:40 AM
Vietnam-what would you carry?

A Bible and a 1911.

Cannot go wrong with either and that's pretty much all you'd need.

1 old 0311
May 1, 2007, 05:07 AM
They issued me a M-16. I dumped that as quick as possible and got a M-14. I 'acquired' a S&W 60 for a back up.

Seven High
May 1, 2007, 05:57 AM
If I could have as many magazines as I wanted, I would choose a 1911A1. If not, I would choose a Hi-Power. I would also choose a M16 with a good cleaning kit, with a lot of Dri-Slide!

Working Man
May 1, 2007, 06:26 AM
Two best post for early morning :D s

As a mid 20's healthy male of Vietnamese descent, I would have likely been shooting at you guys. :o

Don't know why but that cracked me up.... guess it was unexpected.

What would I carry?

Likely a clipboard and a Nikon...

May 1, 2007, 06:34 AM
Someone mentioned A1-E's - God those are great memories!!!

My first encounter with them was at Doc To - we'd been mortered for days, "fast movers had tried and tried to shut them dowm, but no sucess.

We got a pair of them(A-1's) in (Aussie driven) call-sign "Hobo"' - out of Tuy Hoa. They circled the mountain for about 15 minutes, then rolled off to start their run.

The morter pit was on the steep side of a mountain, hiden by vegitation and rocks. First "Hobo" was dragging nape - flaps up, gear down."Two" had 500# frags. Lead drops over the crest, terrain following, dumps his nape, breaks right - "Two" is "prop to rudder" behind him and drops his frags.

It's SHOW TIME! That mountain lit up like the Fourth of July - and the secondaries were "icing on the cake"!

They stayed for a couple of hours - shooting up the mountain when they saw something - but probably just for fun.

I bumped into them often for the rest of that tour and the next one too- they were great to work with! "Fast movers" had 15 minutes "station time" - these guys had 6 hours of "loiter time" - and they weren't stingy with it.

On the ground - I want a 1911, a survival radio - AND two "Hobo's" or "Sandies" hanging around. Screw the "fast movers" and the "arc lights"!


May 1, 2007, 08:57 AM
My uncle was in Special Forces and had a prototype Glock 17.:neener: Joking from the start,guys. Hence the neener face. :neener: My uncle was in Vietnam,but not Special Forces,and I know there were no Glocks then. I was just poking fun at all the 'Nam BS that's out there.

I'm with the AK/1911 crowd.

Outlaw Man
May 1, 2007, 10:24 AM
The nuclear football. ;)

May 1, 2007, 10:33 AM

Douglas Skyraider, loaded up with Napalm, clusters, and A-P Rockets

From on-high to Fast and LOW, troop Air/Ground Support :fire:


May 1, 2007, 10:51 AM
The "Mattel toy".

Beware of the troops with the black rifle!

May 1, 2007, 11:25 AM
well I was just a glimmer in dad and mothers eyes at the time but...

I would have wanted to be in helicopters.If I couldn't have flown them then I would have settled for door gunner so give me the M60.

My dad was there btw,1st cav division.He did fly in UH-1's,so guess thats where I get my idea from.He was hit on a rocket attack at his base,sent to Japan then back stateside to Ft Rucker.I was around to remember Ft Rucker,all those helos flying around left a impact on me.

What about Korea?my dad was a grunt there,says he carried a m1903 and got hold of a P38 he traded from somebody.After all those years latter when I brought home a carbine or Garand he tore them down without missing a beat.Sorry to rant about my dad but I love and respect him so much.

May 1, 2007, 12:10 PM
m16 :)

May 1, 2007, 12:16 PM
Do have anyone here is officer in Vietnam wars?

May 1, 2007, 12:23 PM
I would have wanted to be in helicopters.If I couldn't have flown them then I would have settled for door gunner so give me the M60.

Hmmmm... Well, I was in the army back then. Seems to me I recall that the life expectancy of a helicopter door gunner was often reported to be 20 days, 28 days, maybe 7 weeks. Might not have been true, but you do get the idea. :evil:

Me? I think Tuner has it right.

May 1, 2007, 12:26 PM
kimsonvu asked:

>Do have anyone here is officer in Vietnam wars?<

That would be Vern...and we still call your homeplace Saigon. :cool:

Vern Humphrey
May 1, 2007, 12:35 PM
Do have anyone here is officer in Vietnam wars?
I was an adviser (1/48 ARVN Infantry, 18th ARVN Division) my first tour and a company commander (A-1/61 IN) my second tour.

May 1, 2007, 12:36 PM
Puff, the Magic Dragon......

...that is, if I couldn't get hold of a passport and a plane ticket to Canada... ;)

May 1, 2007, 12:50 PM
One thing to consider about any Kalishikov variant:

It will draw 'friendly' fire.:uhoh:

I have an employer who is, well, had some experiences in Vietnam. I have none, and can only empathize based on my own time in Jungles elsewhere and in 3rd world countries. This fellow carried on occasion, in addition to issued gear, 12 ga pump shotgun and even a Tommy Gun. He bought it in a city over there while on r n r. He has some crazy stories, but the one I remember most was this;

his camp was over run and the enemy was inside the perimeter. His buddy had a grenade down his shirt and got blown all over him. He woke up with destroyed glasses and parts of buddy on chest. Still half deaf and partial blind today. He crawled around eventually finding a dead VC with AK and rolled into a berm and returned fire to the enemy. Within seconds what was left of his team opened fire on his position - it was night time and they heard the distinctive POP POP POP of the 7.62 russian. He quickly abandoned the hole and the weapon eventually making his way out of the predicament and now is superintendent of the county school system. Very straightforward and cool guy, awesome in schools. Taught a lesson on Vietnam to my class when principle/parents crapped that I told them what a "Punji Stick" was.:fire: Has two (dummy) grenades on office desk.


Accurized bolt action and a long, slow, crawl. . . .


May 1, 2007, 12:50 PM
A bunch of these:

and some of these:

slung under one of these:

or one of these:

May 1, 2007, 02:05 PM

Shot these!

May 1, 2007, 02:08 PM
CAR15 and M1911A1

May 1, 2007, 02:22 PM
Remember one time as an FNG, heloed into a Firebase while in the air saw all kinds of fires burning and figured they just got hit, heartrate thru my ears, death grip on the rifle, turned out they were just burning the ****ters! What would I carry,,,plenty of OD Green toilet paper!

May 1, 2007, 02:22 PM

May 1, 2007, 03:59 PM
double-stack 1911 longslide
AK47 or G3 or HK 91

Then, just in case the 1911 goes down, a GLOCK 26. Converted to full-auto.

May 1, 2007, 05:00 PM
Likely a clipboard and a Nikon...

Ditto! Specifically a Nikon F.

If I had to fight and I had my choice, I'd like a L1A1 and a .357 revolver.


May 1, 2007, 06:03 PM
AC-130 Spectre :D

May 1, 2007, 06:37 PM
I was in an A-4 squadron and your pictures bring back a flood of memories. The 20mm cannon was awesome..when they worked. Wish I had a nickel for every 500 pounder we put on a rack. Our sqaudron had a sandy rigged for transport that I got a ride in once or twice. Thanks for the pics.

May 1, 2007, 06:52 PM
Tommy Gun + 1911. Or a Tommy Gun + revolver.

Or just a Tommy Gun. 1928 model with C-drum preferred. Drum for initial use, stick mags for reloads.

May 1, 2007, 06:53 PM
I carried a wrench. If I hadda go back I'd want a hammer, too!

Redneck with a 40
May 1, 2007, 08:10 PM
I would carry an AK-47 and a Browning Hi-Power. My dad served in Vietnam, they issued him a 38 special revolver, he decided not to carry it. He smuggled in a browning hi-power and carried it.:D

May 1, 2007, 08:12 PM
Supposedly the Navy Seals bolted together two Remington 1100s and set them for full auto. It would hold 22 rounds and was meant only for last out defensive fire. Still, a quick blast of 22 12guage number 4 buckshot rounds would surely discourage pursuit.

I would probably pack a suppressed Sten (pretty sure some of our special ops used those) as my primary and use the dual-Remington when I needed to get out quick after being noticed.

May 1, 2007, 08:25 PM
Tour 1 .38 S&W UH-1D/H pilot
Tour 2 .357 Colt Python and at various times: M3 grease gun (too heavy), Thompson (also too heavy) M79 between the seats and mostly an M2 carbine cut way down (OH-58A pilot).

May 1, 2007, 08:30 PM
I was issued an M-16, and I carried a 1911 with it at every chance.

May 1, 2007, 08:50 PM
It would all depend. First choice would be either a Remington 870, Mossberg 500, or Ithaca 37. Backing that up would be an accurized 1911,preferably. Might also consider an S&W 27/28 or Colt Python, 4" bbl, with plenty of 158 gr semi-wadcutters. If there might be the possibility of some long range work either a Rem 700, Win 70 or match M14, with a good 10X or 15X scope.

Actually would prefer figuring out a way to smuggle in a couple of AH64D Apaches with plenty of backup stores. :what: Oh, we didn't have Apaches back then did we. :D

May 1, 2007, 08:58 PM
Lordy! That ol' Skyraider was a beautiful piece of machinery! Loved to see'em comin' in low and hot.:cool:

The Deer Hunter
May 1, 2007, 09:05 PM

May 1, 2007, 09:56 PM
Not would but Did
an M-14 with a selector and a 1911, I was an E-5 squad leader

May 1, 2007, 09:57 PM
I'll take a 1911 for my sidearm.

And a Browning Higher Power .50 cal Heavy Barrel.

No one else mentioned it yet, but it has so much authority.

May 2, 2007, 01:01 AM
I was issued a M16, but when I left the line company, I traded for a Swedish K (the Carl Gustav Sub, with 100 rds of 9 mm ammo), side arm was 1911, but after I shipped out one of my medics, I kept his 1911, so I had two. The replacement medic had his own, so I couldn't palm it off on him, so I carried both. I had 4-30 rd mags for the K, so I was short a few rounds on each, but eventually dropped the 4th mag, when I got into a short fracas, and emptied it.
I was a medic with Tiger Force 1/327 Inf, 101st Airborne, 68-69.
Seeing the young guys in the outfit in two weeks at Week of the Eagle, so I will check on what they carry now in Afganistan (they are going for their 3d tour in the sandbox).
I also had a Marine Kabar, a pocket knife and a P-38. The can opener not the pistol or the plane.

May 2, 2007, 01:53 AM
Sorry for the slight OT but....

Thank you to all of you who served over in Vietnam. You were never officially given the gratitude of your Nation and that was/is a shame. I am very grateful for your service.

I am grateful to all who put their lives on the line for my family and I. Those who serve in all branches of Military, the Police Department, Fire Fighters and everyone else who go in the direction of danger when everyone else is going the other way.


May 2, 2007, 02:57 AM
I helped a number of my buddies ship 12 gauge pump shot guns with 18" barrels to their brothers, fathers, and friends. It was by far the most requested item that the guys wanted for jungle duty. Nothing beats 12 gauge double 00 or slugs for close combat in the jungle. Reports back from Nam (and some pictures) said the VC and NVA hated the 12 gauge!!! Pictures documented the effectiveness of the 12 gauge!!!!!!:evil:

I was stationed at Ft. Monmouth, NJ during the 68 TET offensive, we shipped a lot of shotguns after that. The military post office didn't ask many questions about packages going to Nam.

May 2, 2007, 03:39 AM
My primary was a 20mm cannon, BU was some 2.75" rockets, now and again they let me have some TOW missiles, personal issue was a S&W .38 Special 4" barrel (still got it). Oh, carried it all in a AH-1G Cobra Attack Helicopter. Also had a M3A1 .45 Grease Gun I traded a tanker for a flight (he liked the 20mm, Charlie didn't).

Dr. Dickie
May 2, 2007, 07:36 AM
Personally, I would like to carry an AC130 under my butt!:neener:

Essex County
May 2, 2007, 11:36 AM
Another vote for the M2 Carbine. Also a 1911. Essex

May 2, 2007, 12:44 PM
AK47 and a BHP - if I was on my own - if I had buddies - whatever they carried.

May 2, 2007, 12:46 PM
If I was LRRPin' it, I'd go with an AK. If not, standard issue.


May 2, 2007, 12:51 PM
Read a good response on what to choose, I think. It went somethin' like:

"Private! You will choose this weapon!"

"Yes, Gunny!"



May 2, 2007, 01:15 PM
1st tour: M2 carbine, 1911, Ithaca M37 (a real short one)
2nd tour: M14, 1911. M36 in pocket.

May 2, 2007, 01:20 PM
3 tours...1911 and 870 Remington shorty

May 2, 2007, 02:07 PM
It seem 1911 pistol is popular .....I born at 198x...not know too much about Vietnam war but know more from my family.


May 2, 2007, 02:25 PM
Absolute staff-wienie, REM*, spent a year on in-country TDY orders going from one end to the other annoying people actually doing something. Carried a personally-owned commercial Colt Government Model and a really elderly US Army Winchester Model 97 12-gauge (bayonet lug and all). Vietnamese translator/driver/ultimately friend (ex-French Army NCO) carried an equally elderly Thompson M1 submachine gun (on my hand receipt from MACV). Most of our time was spent wandering around in urban areas (Dong Ha south), so we had no need of weapons with any kind of range. Our technique was empty the magazines in the direction from which we received fire and di di mau and come back with real warriors — Army, USMC or ARVN (and some of them were very good).

Vern Humphrey
May 2, 2007, 02:54 PM
Ah, Dong Ha -- in my day, HQ for the 3rd Mar Div. My brigade (1st Bde, 5th Inf Div) was part of 3rd Mar Div -- one of only two Army-Marine divisions to see combat in US history.

May 2, 2007, 07:37 PM
I would probably go with the M14, with the almost obligatory M1911A1.

May 2, 2007, 08:00 PM
...any gun that would function.....and Jane Fonda's itenarary.


May 2, 2007, 08:39 PM
And since we have the real deal here, has anyone carried BOTH the M14 and the M16? If so what did you prefer and why? What were your problems with each?

I carried a M14 for a short time before I got a M16. I preffered the M16 as:

1. I had a M14 with a selector. Very good for making noise and spray and pray.

2. When the finish wore on the M14 it was very prone to rusting. The only rust I ever saw on a M16 was on the ejection port cover. Sometimes.

3. The M14 with 2 full ammo pouches + 1 in the rifle gave you 100 rds, M16 the same way gave you 140 rds. Yes the 7.62 was more powerful but the 5.56 worked fine.

4. When frolicking in the countryside I would carry about 400 rds (claymore bag and a bandolier) for the M16. Plus a belt or two for the M60. I would not like to hump 400 rds of 7.62 for a M14.

5. Like someone else said I knew how to use a cleaning kit. Do what the Army told. I had no reliability issues with the M16. Oh yeah, as someone else said I also used Dri-slide. I think Breakfree would be about as good.

I'd pick what I had a M16 and either a S&W 38 or 1911. Also a PRC25 on the DIVARTY net. Much more responsive than air and there were very few places in South Vietnam that weren't covered by FA fires. Field Artillery can deliver in all types of weather. Naval Gun Fire is great but doesn't help you unless you're near the coast.

There were a variety of small arms around for fun or some special use. Carrying an AK could get you KIA by friendly fire. LRRPs and SOG guys carried them to look like VC or NVA. Later on in the war they carried M16s as everyone on both sides had them.

Shotguns are good up close but I never saw slugs incountry so if the enemy was 100 yds away you could be screwed.

Scoped rifles are fine for long distance but pretty slow at pumping out rounds at close quarters.

May 2, 2007, 08:45 PM
Read a good response on what to choose, I think. It went somethin' like:

"Private! You will choose this weapon!"

"Yes, Gunny!"


Thats totally true but, my choice would be a M16 or an M14 if I could get it and then a 1911A1.

May 2, 2007, 10:45 PM
Cool Movie Selection: Browning Hi-Power and a Swedish K SMG.

Reality: M16A1 and a M1911A1.

May 4, 2007, 07:11 PM
I like these replies! Pretty informative stuff from all the vets around here.

Thank you all very much for your service.

My Choices: M16 & 1911 for in the bush

Thompson or M1 carbine & 1911 for urban (think Hue)

Shadow Shock
May 4, 2007, 07:16 PM
I spoke with my Dad's best freind, he said ifhe had to go back, he'd use the same thing he used the first time, M16A1 and M1911A1. He doesn't like the inacurate AK's

Vern Humphrey
May 4, 2007, 07:36 PM
My Choices: M16 & 1911 for in the bush

Thompson or M1 carbine & 1911 for urban (think Hue)
My experience in fighting in urban areas is that you need something with penetration -- lots of concrete walls and so on that you need to shoot through. Neither the Thompson or M1 carbine is good for that.

Personally, I consider a 7.62 with AP to be about the minimum. I prefered working an M113 APC into position and using the M2 .50 Caliber whenever possible.

May 4, 2007, 09:02 PM
Browning High Power and this

May 4, 2007, 09:08 PM
AK 47, and Hi Power (If I can use Hollowpoints, if not, then a 1911).

the pistolero
May 4, 2007, 09:59 PM
1911 and M-14. As for Vietnam-era airpower, I've always had a soft spot in my heart for the AC-130 Spectre, and the old warhorse the B-52. :D

May 5, 2007, 01:20 AM
Todays rifles, Sig556 or HK416 or Robinson Arms M-96 in 5.56 62grain green penetrator round or even heavier bullets in the 70 to 80 grain range, for Sniper work accurized AR platform or M-14 Platform in 7.62 or 260 Remington or 6.5 Grendel, handgun Glock 19 with 33 round Glock 9mm magazines and Speer Gold Dots or Powerball or Cor Bon Ammo.

Yesterdays rifles, Stoner 63 or AR180 for general combat and Winchester Model 70 or Remington 700 or accurized M-14 for Sniper work in 7.62, handgun Browning High Power.

James T Thomas
May 5, 2007, 03:21 PM
I carried the M16 with 108 rounds in six magazines in the pouches. Four handgrenades. Usually two or three M375, 81mm mortar rounds. If you kill 108 or 126 of the enemy in any one engagement, you will be doing good.

I had the option to carry the 1911 pistol, but declined.

Several times I was able to give extra ammo to those who came crawling by.

My weapon of choice would be the M14. The younger brother of the best battlefield rifle ever made. I would have gladly born the additional weights.
Not meant as a jibe, but with even a little PM, rust would not have been a problem. -From someone who was continually in the green latrine.
{Vern; we went 65 days or so without a bath or change of clothes. The laundry was broken down or something. My socks became stiff as boots!
And my jacket/shirt took on the aspect of an armored vest -hard.}

Many of my posts here on THR are where I've espoused fire control and aimed, one shot shooting. The M16 spraying, I will testify, is useless.
Even at close jungle range. Trust me on that. At moderate ranges of 25m,
the 22 cal. round proved "ineffective." We were not hunting varmits.
This was Airmoblile warfare; the Cavalry -helicopters were our "steeds."

The only application where I would advocate for the M16 would be the urban, house to house, as in Bhagdad. Even then...

Vern Humphrey
May 5, 2007, 04:09 PM
Vern; we went 65 days or so without a bath or change of clothes. The laundry was broken down or something. My socks became stiff as boots!
And my jacket/shirt took on the aspect of an armored vest -hard.}

I know the feeling -- I used to try to find pools of water, streams, bomb craters and so on and arrange for a few cakes of soap and scrub brushes in our resupply. We'd put out security and get reasonably clean.

Funny thing, no manual discusses that vital operation, the combat bath and laundry tactic.:D

Many of my posts here on THR are where I've espoused fire control and aimed, one shot shooting. The M16 spraying, I will testify, is useless.

I used to drill fire control into the boy's heads. In my company, a burst on full auto was worth an Article 15 and a $50 fine.

May 5, 2007, 04:13 PM
AK 47 and a S&W 686 in .357

Fulcrum of Evil
May 5, 2007, 07:50 PM
My snark response: A plane ticket to somewhere else (not Laos, TYVM). I'd never get called up anyway, what with my uncle and grandfather being in theatre anyway.

Now, if I was stuck on the ground, an M4 carbine with a good ammo mix and a Sig would be nice for infantry. Dunno if the scout sniper role was used much - for that, I'd probably want something in .308 with optics. For some reason, that role is more appealing to me anyways.

June 23, 2007, 03:08 PM
A flintlock...cause while they were laughing at me, I'd cut their ___ throats! Oh, sorry, thinking out loud again. Let's see....that'd be a modified 1903A3 with Unertl, and a 1911.

June 23, 2007, 05:13 PM
Well first time M-1 M-14 and 1911 2nd time M-16 1911 . M-14 was a little hard to handle in a O-1 bird dog so M-1 went most time Nice thing was Radios on board brought all kinds of toys to the party.

June 23, 2007, 05:45 PM
M14 and 1911

June 23, 2007, 05:47 PM
Ixnay the choices I had earlier. After watching Delta Force II, I know what to carry. Chuck Norris. He can fire a double tap from a 1911 when in slidelock.

June 23, 2007, 06:45 PM
Ithaca m37

June 23, 2007, 06:51 PM
A-10 Warthog

June 23, 2007, 07:05 PM
M16A1 / 1911a1 colt / M79

June 23, 2007, 07:09 PM
I say the ar-10 1911 also wow what a combo

June 23, 2007, 07:22 PM
'Hawg didn't exist then, and I'd use THIS:

Yep, that's right, MY BUTT strapped into the controls of a B-52!:uhoh::what: Be afraid, be scared crapless...:evil:

June 23, 2007, 07:51 PM
I'd take a AK-47, and a browning hi-power. :neener:

June 23, 2007, 10:25 PM
A leveraction .30-30. (Think Crazy Earl from Full Metal Jacket.)

But, in reality, I'd take an M14 if I could.

June 23, 2007, 10:35 PM
many grenades

June 23, 2007, 10:44 PM
'Hawg didn't exist then

I didn't see any rules to the question.

June 23, 2007, 10:50 PM
1911 in 45
Thompson 45
dragon skin body armor

June 24, 2007, 05:29 PM
Another off topic break:

Thank you for your service. My brother was with you, and I'm happy to report that his recent surgery was successful in treating an agent orange related tumor. For some, it is never over. All of you are are appreciated and hold a place of honor.


June 24, 2007, 06:11 PM
If restricted to the weapons of the day M3 Grease Gun. Bursts of 230 gr .45acp is effective enough for most of the close range fighting that went on in Nam, and even a XM feels damn heavy after humping the bastard all day. Pair it with a 1911, and I'm set as long as my squad has a DM.

If I could take a modern weapon then make mine a HK UMP in .45 auto, with a M68 Aimpoint please. I'll take a Glock 21 for a BUG.

June 24, 2007, 08:52 PM
An M14 with an 18 inch barrel, and about 20 magazines.

Joe Demko
June 24, 2007, 09:40 PM
An M14 with an 18 inch barrel, and about 20 magazines.

That's nearly 23 pounds in just cartridges alone, not even counting the weight of the magazines themselves or the web gear and pouches you'd need to hold them.

June 24, 2007, 09:44 PM
I'd go M1A and 1911

June 24, 2007, 11:06 PM
2 M60D's
AK47 w/ folding stock
S&W .38 Special

June 26, 2007, 08:32 AM
Haven't seen my choice listed. I would have gotten hold of a PPsh-41. That little 7.62x25 is hot as a .357 Mag, which would beat a 9mm Carl Gustav, not to mention that 71 round drum would be handy in a close-range jungle firefight.
For a handgun. Gotta say I am a devout M1911A1 fan

Brother in Arms
June 26, 2007, 12:09 PM
I mentioned the PPSH back up near the top of the thread....which is a great gun for up close and personal situations. Its hard to beat 71 shots of 7.62x25mm. But I would use the stick magazines because they are more reliable and less likely to be damaged they also make the PPSH easier to lug around. Also 4-35 rounders fit into each pocket of a chinese AK chest pouch thats 12-35 round magazines at your disposal and you can still carry 4 hand grenades in the side pouches, I think it would be a sweet rig.

Brother in Arms

June 26, 2007, 12:46 PM
Whatever the nice man with all of those stripes on his sleeve told me to carry...

For those of you who were there. Thanks.

June 26, 2007, 12:54 PM
Being the luckiest guy on the planet I was given over to the Australian Task Force as part of their Foward Air Control unit. I didn't fly I was the guy on the grou7nd with the PRC.
As soon as I arrived with my 1911 and M-16 the armourer looked at me and told me to go with him. a high power and a FAL later I was ready to go. Oh, I got to keep the 1911 and the M-16. Fantastic trade bait.


June 26, 2007, 01:19 PM
I carried an M21 and a .357 Colt. I traded off the S&W, the one I had was a POS. I never minded the extra weight of the .308, it was kinda comforting.

June 26, 2007, 09:46 PM
Stoner 63 and a 1911 with a couple of OV-10's overhead containing two each Seals or Force Recon Marines.

Detachment Charlie
June 26, 2007, 10:52 PM
AirForceShooter is the luckiest guy to have been there....Man, did the Aussies have great beer!!!
Vern, Thanks alot for mentioning Dong Ha, gateway to paradise (Gio Lihn, Con Thien, Rock Pile and points North). Ah, the fun we had.
Started with brace of Nikons, an M-2 carbine & a 1911. Scrapped the M-2 after I ran out of ammo during a bit of unpleasantness just north of the Cua Viet. Strange, none of the Jarheads (Hey, at least I capitalized Jarheads)had any .30 cal. carbine ammo. After that it was a shotgun (M-97 or M37), M-16 or what ever I could pick-up after my 16 locked-up and I need something more than a 105mm Nikor lens to shoot with.
AFS...see you at the range. My new Ar-15 actually shoots, unlike the original M-16.
Ah hell, I admit it. It was the free helo rides that got me to go back the second time. :evil:

June 27, 2007, 12:45 AM
Two tours, first tour M-16 & .45 Gov. 2nd time around scrounged M-14.


May 22, 2008, 03:38 AM

I search and found some old image in Saigon 1975 . May be someone remember something in this nice city .

I upload into my host, if this is advertise - mod can delete them

May 22, 2008, 04:12 AM
From a REAL standpoint, I would carry whatever reliable weapon that had reliable resupply and also one suited for my job or MOS.

Assuming I was a typical Soldier or officer that would likely have been the M16 or M14.

In a make believe world where all things are considered equal, and I had my choice independent of other factors, and I had to choose a reliable infantry weapon for heavy close quarters combat in a wet, muddy, densely forested terrain, I would chose the AK47 as my primary weapon and the 1911 as my sidearm. My second choice for a primary weapon would be the M14.

May 22, 2008, 04:19 AM
HK 417

May 22, 2008, 04:25 AM
For pure combat no thrills combat glock 17 select fire with p90 select fire

May 22, 2008, 06:09 AM
Well as a Brit odficialy I would not haev been there but hypothetically, I would have been an iinstructor attached to austrailian or NZ SAS.

L1A1 SLR, probably with SUIT scope, Webley .455 service revolver, hand grenades, detcord and a motorcycle.*

(*was not there 18)

May 22, 2008, 06:46 AM
If I had my choice, I'd take an AK-47 and a 1911

May 22, 2008, 06:56 AM
Depends on the rules of this game.

If it's anything I want, including modern weapons?

Robarm XCR with an ACE M4 SOCOM sidefolding stock, slung at my right side, muzzle down. Either 5.56 or 7.62 depending on what I'm doing. EOtech holosight with a 4x flip-to-side magnifier, flip-up iron sights, tangodown vertical grip, visible green laser on the underside rail, and an IR laser on the side rail with adjustable divergence so it can be used as an IR flashlight with NODs. The vacant side rail may or may not have a CAA picatinny rail mag pouch for an M16 mag.

Savage 10FP 20" Choate Folder, slung 'crossdraw' style on my left side. Harris bipod and Leupold FX-3 12x40mm

USP45 Tactical. Insight LAM

Dark Ops E&E Interceptor knife

Spetsnaz shovel

Victorinox Swisstool

Streamlight Sidewinder light with a helmet mount.

Surefire 9P with infrared filter, and a daniel defense offset flashlight mount already attached to it so it can replace the IR laser for IR illumination if it fails.

Suppressors for all my firearms.

For the Vietnam Era


Uzi (with stock removed)




M-99/U flashlight

Any 2-cell flashlight from the era

May 22, 2008, 08:20 AM
I was an infantryman in the Americal Division and was wounded twice.
I mostly carried an M-79 grenade launcher which was fine except mine was really tired. I tried to get any kind of handgun for close quarters but it was nearly impossible since the guys in the rear all thought they needed a .45 to carry around. I would have been happy with any kind of handgun!

WEIGHT! I had good experiences with the M-16 also and saving a few pounds makes a huge difference when you carry it 24 hours a day.
I have never had, nor seen anyone have jamming problems with the M-16; maybe it was because they had the problems fixed by my tour.


May 22, 2008, 10:32 AM
Having been there,...(Nam 68-71),...all enlisted,...I carried a lot of different weapons there,...saw a lot of others being used as well. My first trip in, my sidearm was with a Colt Python, went bye bye pdq,... a great piece, but the action tolerances were too tight for the AO,..swapped it to a Huey jockey for an old S&W Model 10 in .38,... after that my constants became: A scrounged USGI 1911, occasionally a Ruger Gov't Model .22, ...and when in the "ville" I carried an old Browning .380 under my arm pit. Was given an unreliable M-16,... that whenever I had the choice pretty much stayed in the rack back at base camp. Used an M-14 for the most part, heavy as a truck, but was worth carrying the weight,...also used the M-2 carbine, a .45 Grease Gun, and on a few occasions a Thompson SMG. When needed I also used a 12 gauge pump with issued 00 Buck, ....and on more occasions than I care to recall, an AK-47 or an SKS from a battle field pick up. All depended on the where when and why. If I had to do it again I'd choose the M-14 and a 1911 anything,....and a 105 Howitzer Battery, and an overhead flight of Cobra's on call. Either would be real hard to beat when it gets real.

May 22, 2008, 11:17 AM
BTW,...noted there's an awful lot of us in this thread,......

Welcome Home Brothers!, and all.

Did any of you link with Kimsonvu?

May 22, 2008, 11:30 AM
I spent some time there. Spooky and Spectre were always appreciated for keeping us relatively safe, as were the battalion of ROK's that guarded Phu Cat. VC absolutely did NOT mess with the ROK's. I had to carry the standard M-16 and a S&W .38 special, neither of which I had much faith in. I consider myself very fortunate to have never have had to depend on them, and to have come home unscathed, more or less.

May 22, 2008, 03:31 PM

Pat McCoy
May 22, 2008, 06:28 PM
'69-'70. Carried National Match M14 and 1911 as platoon leader. Later 1911 and M16 when escorting Hoi Chan's or captive back out into the field (would rather have had M79 with canister and he rounds) for that part of the tour.

Today I'd choose the FN FS2000 and a good 1911.

May 23, 2008, 02:03 AM
AK-47 and a 1911

May 23, 2008, 02:23 AM
A prototype Glock and a davy crocket.

May 23, 2008, 02:38 AM
1911A1 and a BAR. I might take the Thompson MG over the BAR but I'd rather reach out and touch someone. The BAR is heavy but I'm 210lbs so I can handle it even in full auto. Much easier to shoot than the M14.

May 23, 2008, 02:45 AM
First of all, I am very glad not to have been there, not at all something I would choose to do. I have played enough paintball to know that all the Hollywood crap is just that, and it is very easy to get dead fast -- and that with inaccurate, short-range paintball weapons. My hat goes off to anyone who's ever had to fight in the jungle, anywhere.

The only weapon mentioned that have actually fired much is an Thompson M1A1, and I would be pretty happy to have the Tommy and a Colt 1911 if I had to be in a situation like that.

May 23, 2008, 06:10 AM
I'd have either been carrying the M-60 or the M-79 (we did have the option of carrying a 1911 with that).

But it ended before I shipped there, so I got to carry those (not at the same time :p ) on Okinawa.

May 23, 2008, 07:43 AM
Given a choice (and ammo) pretty much what I got now. M-249 w/ACOG and PEQ-2, IBA, AN/PVS-14. Through a 1911 in there too. (don't have one, but would like mine from home)

If we're in fantasy land, BOLO MK XXXII. 200cm Hellbore FTW.

May 23, 2008, 07:47 AM
I think the AK-47 was the perfect weapon for the jungle environment of Southeast Asia. Secondary would be a Browning Hi Power for me.

May 23, 2008, 07:52 AM
IF i could use modern fire power, it would be a bushmaster 450 and a smith and wesson m&p 945 (11 rounds 45acp).

May 23, 2008, 07:55 AM
M-14 was a little hard to handle in a O-1 bird dog so M-1 went most time Nice thing was Radios on board brought all kinds of toys to the party.


Where you a FAC? My hat goes off to you sir. Would love to hear some stories.

I've read some of John Plaster's books on SOG and they seemed to prefer the CAR-15 or AK.

May 23, 2008, 08:01 AM
That ol' Skyraider was a beautiful piece of machinery! Loved to see'em comin' in low and hot.

Tuner, if you want to see some great depiction of Sandy ops, get the movie "Flight of the Intruder" based on the book by Stephen Coonts. Also has a lot of great carrier ops scenes.

May 23, 2008, 09:54 AM
I have a close family friend who was a Lt near Da Nang (USMC) in the late 60's. While in Vietnam he had access to several guns; M-16, Thompson, AK, and a 1911. It was interesting as he said "some days going out it was like golf- I'd pick the right club for the job depending on what we were doing and where we were going."

I have a lot of respect for him and any American who has served in combat.

May 23, 2008, 01:02 PM
Chainsaw in one and and a double-barrel sawed off shotgun in the other...

in all seriousness,

give me an M1A and a 1911 - nothing else will do.

May 23, 2008, 01:07 PM
AK 47 and hi power pistol.

May 23, 2008, 01:18 PM
mdao...and you would probably have died!

May 23, 2008, 01:25 PM
I might like to add that using an AK-47 or other chi-com weapon in Vietnam was akin to assisted suicide.

Unlike the last few wars where both sides are using AK's, SVD's, etc, Vietnam was different.

At night, a burst of AK-47 fire would bring smoke on your ass from every American within earshot.


May 23, 2008, 01:58 PM
I read SOG; the special ops in SE Asia by John Plaster(US Army special forces/USAR, retired). Major Plaster noted that most 9mm SMGs(like the Swedish Ks and S&W model 76s) and pistols were useless in the field, :uhoh:. He pushed hard to get a 5.56mm CAR-15 and put rifle mags where he had his old sidearm, ;).

Plaster also wrote that the SOG unit members could request nearly any weapon they wanted and US-MAC-SOG-V headquarters would get it for them, :D.

If I could select my own weapons, I'd use a Stoner SEAL type heavy machine gun, with the cut down barrel, ;), in 7.62mm. I'd also have a M-14 with a starlight scope/ART type sniper scope. A short barrel or cut down left handed 870 or 1100 .12ga shotgun, a M-79 grenade launcher, a .22LR Ruger target pistol(with sound surpressor) for spec ops, a S&W bodyguard model 49 .38spl for BUG/off duty use. I'd also pack a 1911a1 or high power but I would not always carry it in the field.

Vern Humphrey
May 23, 2008, 04:01 PM
I am especially interested in the comments here of Vietnam Vets who had their choice at the time of service. They and they alone would have the best insight IMHO.

As an adviser to an ARVN infantry battalion (4/48 ARVN INF), I was issued an M2 carbine -- a miserable piece of junk. I chose to carry a Colt M357 (you could get away with carrying private weapons in those days.) After my carbie got wrapped around a tree, I chose to carry an M1 Garand.

On my second tour, as an Infantry company commander (A-1/61 IN) I chose to carry an M14 sniper rifle (this was before the M24 was standardized.)

May 23, 2008, 04:46 PM
Just found this.

Boy does this bring back memories. Some of my 'Nam' history.

3rdMarDiv HQ SubUnit 2 Dong Ha. Was my Admin Rear.

Some dates are a little fuzzy today, along with the names of some units I was attached to.

I was an enlisted Marine FAC. (not airborne certified) Important because our FAC(A)'s used O1C birddogs and later were supplemented with the suburb OV-10. We also got support from an Army Birddog unit 220th Aviation company call sign KatKiller. We often didn't have enough airborne certified controllers to fill their back seats. So they would use any of us enlisted T*rds in the rear when a flight came up. The trick was we were only allowed to work "red Line" or better said, over North Vietnam.

Some one said they had a hard time with an M14 in an O1. Well I was rather proud of my confirmed KBA (Killed By Air) firing out the window full auto with my M14, the pilot kept saying over and over again, "Don't hit the prop, Don't hit the Prop." We also used M26A1 Frag and W/P grenades in peanut butter jars or real glass water glasses.

I got two Purple Hearts, neither one to bad. Not as easy as Ole John sKerry's, but I didn't get pulled out of 3rd Med for either of them either. Both got me about a week or week+ in the hospital there.

To the subject. I carried an M14 with a selector for most of both tours. Was Forced to get an M16 in mid 69, BrigGen had his aide get my name, unit and service #. No choice at that point.

I was getting to the Nam in 67 just as the Corps was forced to accept the M16. I bagged and tagged a bunch of Marines because of that widow Maker. Believe me if cleaning the rifle was the primary problem, we wouldn't have had a problem of consequence. Just more myth and AR/M16/M4 koolaide folks selling their BS. I will stop here because I can go on this rant for hours, about factual problems with the M16 then, and the family today. Some of the problems haven't changed in 45 years.

For a handgun I carried a M10 'Victory' model S&W. The 1911's I had available to me were not reliable, many were less reliable than the M16E1's we were issued. No where near as reliable as my 1911's I carry today. Given the choice and if I could have afforded it, I would have gotten a High Power P-35.

I was in Khe Sanh for Tet. I thought we had gotten over. Then 2-4 days after Tet the boss wanted me to take a team to Hue. My immediate response was "Why the f*** do I want to go to Hue???" Unlike some of the services today, it may come as a shock to you, but I didn't have an option. We flew to Hue and I was attached to 5th Marines for the first time.

That wasn't fun. At that point they weren't allowing us to run air. Lucky for me and my guys, they didn't put us in the assault elements. They used us with the security elements. We swept the buildings after the guy's doing the heavy lifting had taken the next street of Buildings. 2-3 weeks later they pulled us out for some R&R back in Khe Sanh.

I am glad that I had an M14 instead of a SMG of any caliber 45,6, 7.62X25 etc. Or an M16, but nobody wanted one of them, us or the NVA. The AK was reliable and worked well, but firing an AK at the wrong time would get you wasted by your own guys, because of the sound signature of the AK is so unique. I would still stick to my M14. Not particularly handy, but it could shoot through a lot of stuff, and it NEVER JAMMED. When I finally got hung with an M16 nobody wanted to borrow, steal, or trade for it. M14 was always popular with the other troops, the only problem they had is it was mine and not theirs.

Not much finish on it, but it never rusted either. I had given it a direct and legal order not to rust, and cleaned it twice a day religiously. My 38spl never failed to fire either.

For the Air-Dales, we called all AD1's "spads", and they were great for CAS, their problem was they were so slow, that in really heavy AAA missions or Ground Fire they often got blown out of the air.

So I could hang onto my M14, I could never take my M14 to Danang. So when ever I did any runs to Danang I would take a non standard weapon.

Thompson, M2, AK, SKS, Swedish K, etc. I liked the Swedish K best. Light & reliable. I enjoyed the Thompson, but went on one patrol with it. 347 Rounds of 45 ammo weighed a "ton" I had a drum, in the weapon, and 10 thirty round stick magazines in a mag bag. Bad Mojo.

Oh yea, ammo load outs. For the S&W I would carry 6 in the revolver of course, and an extra 50 rounds of ball. Also carried 12 tracer rounds for the S&W too.

When I carried the M14 I carried 15 Magazine loaded with 20 rounds and one of them was all tracers. Total 300 rounds. Only 9 of the magazines were on my belt.

When I was forced to carry the widow-maker, I carried 33 loaded magazines with one of them 100% tracers. Only 16rounds per magazine, a pair of slip joint pliers to straighten them when they would get tweaked and not fit in the mag-well of the widow-maker. 528 rounds.

Regardless of the ammo carried, I would take the M14 every time over any AR15/M16/M4.

My belt and flack jacket weighed 67 lbs. I weighted them in Sick Bay one time.

Anyone remember 45.5 FM? Medivac net.

Sorry for the rant. But sometimes I get diarrhea of the memory, such as it is. That's when I can remember.

Go figure.


May 23, 2008, 04:52 PM
AK or M14, with a 1911 Colt

May 23, 2008, 05:03 PM
Damn fine post, Fred. Damn fine.

Semper Fi.

May 23, 2008, 05:24 PM
Best post yet, Fred. Thanks

May 23, 2008, 10:12 PM
simple, the GI 45 worked well for the service, why mess around, but I do have others though, but yes just a stock GI 45, from ANdy

May 23, 2008, 10:28 PM
Primary-M16 A-4 with Trijicon. Got me back from Baghdad in one piece. Secondary-BHP. Lots of exta magazines. M-9 would also suffice, but I shoot the BHP much moer effectively.

May 23, 2008, 10:42 PM
Pump Shotgun Rem or BPS, a 9mm with the largest magazine capacity made

May 23, 2008, 10:49 PM
a dozen navy seals

May 23, 2008, 11:31 PM
I have to go with a PPSh-41 and an M79. PPSh loaded with 71-round drum magazines (I'll have, oh, four total), a reliable, deadly weapon with true character, and can pierce brush decently if you shoot enough (and ammo is pretty light, so you shouldn't have that problem), better than a Carbine (albeit heavier, but I'm willing to sacrifice that for 71 rounds on hand). The M79 is loaded with a buckshot load and is on a makeshift quick-release harness on my back (I've made one before, just takes some old webbing, buttons and ingenuity, works pretty damn well, too), and I'll have, maybe three to five of those loads total, the rest will be M406 High Explosive rounds, maybe ten of those.
The PPSh can act as an impromptu machine gun if I want it to, and it's excellent in the close range, and the M79 takes care of all of the problems that can only be solved by a big bore.

May 23, 2008, 11:45 PM
I notice a lot of people seem to choose B-52's. That seems like an entirely bad idea considering presision weapons didn't come about till a bit later on. From what I recall from reading and such it was a very bad thing to be under a B-52. Then again there aren't a lot of first hand accounts.

As for what I would carry? No AK, I hear you'll get shot at from your own guys. Something like a SCAR in 7.62x39 might be good. And sidearm, hmm, hi cap .45 of decent reliability.

I did have a dream once that I was there. I had a broken radio and a 1911 water pistol with a duct tape holster. I was running away. (incidentally I have a 1911 water pistol and I made a duct tape holster for it. It works quite well)

Poor East Texan
May 24, 2008, 01:04 AM
I had at least one uncle in the Nam but he NEVER spoke of it.

THANK YOU Veterans!!! It may be all for nothing come November but you have kept us free!

Some very good stories in this thread!

I've never shot or even handled much an AR/M Variant.
I do very much like the 1911 pistol!

I don't see much need for a pistol in the jungle.

So I think an M16 variant, maybe an A2 upper with adjustable stock and pistol front grip and LOTS of ammo. Backed up by a short barrel 12g pump with 00 buck.

And thanks again vets!!!!

May 24, 2008, 01:19 AM
M-4 and Browning Hi-Power
secondary, M-14 and 1911
Definitely a couple of Skyraiders overhead.

May 24, 2008, 01:29 AM
To all of the Nam vets- Thank you!

I don't think it makes much difference which service you were in, that war had no front lines and everybody was at risk.

I remember sitting in Okinawa when 1975 came around and all of the sudden, we were back in Vietnam... for a few hours at least. I'll not state my feelings on that, but I'll say we were surprised we went back in. It was the saddest rescue mission I ever saw.

May 24, 2008, 02:01 AM
I was issued an M14 for the first 6 weeks I was in country. Not a problem, I had also had one for Basic Training in 1969 and was very confident with it. I never saw an M14 that had the selector switch intact.
When I reached my Aviation Company, I was re-issued an M16 and never recieved any formal training on the thing. After the M14, the M16 was a big disapointment, except when firing full automatic. My M16 was zeroed and was never fired again. My primary weapons were two M60D Models which were set-up with the butterfly handles, twin triggers, & ring/bead sights.
Aircraft Crewmembers were given a sidearm choice of a Colt 1911 or a Smith & Wesson Model 10 .38 Special. I took the S&W and never gave it a second thought. 'Course I never needed to fire it in anger either.
My choices would be my Smith & Wesson Model 10 and my M14.

May 24, 2008, 01:56 PM
ya, I first saw an M16 in Dian, 1st Inf.Div basecamp in 1968. They handed it to me over a counter along with a ton of other crap, mostly to wear. After a couple of days of classes, qualify with my new toy firing at an old M13 APC from the berm and a phony practice ambush (we be ambushees) in the back of a duece and a half, jump out of the truck and take positions in really sucky tall grass, I went by air to another place called Laikhe where I met a fun bunch called bravo,2/28th. Little while later I was at some pit called FSB Orion where we stayed up all night sometimes going for walks and went for walks in the daytime after we got back. It wasn't really much walking though, as the crow flies. Once in a while we'd get to go back to that Laikhe place where they had a maybe shower and new clothes, and a village to get all screweed up in. Couple of days there, maybe, and then go back or maybe go to a new place that looked just like the old place really. This all went on for a long time.

There were always guns. You could play with any kind you wanted to, if you wanted to. Sometimes we'd find guns that somebody lost - whole lots of them sometimes and they'd either get packed up and some guys would come and take them away or more times we'd just blow them all up.

It was really interesting there. Kinda' stupid though. I'd've stayed longer but I got my legs all cut up and couldn't go for those nice walks anymore so they made me go home.

Eric F
May 24, 2008, 02:04 PM
I think a m-3 grease gun and a flame thrower might be good. OH and who can forget a 1911!

May 24, 2008, 08:53 PM
krs -

I was at Phu Loi in 1969.

Dian, Phu Loi, Lai Khe, & Cu Chi were all on Hiway 13.

Just outside of Lai Khe, maybe a klick, the 1st Infantry Division had used Rome Plows and cut a 1st Inf. Div. Patch (Big Red One) into the jungle. This thing must have been a mile long, half mile wide, and could only be seen from the air.
One of our aviation companies, the 173rd Robin Hoods, was based out of Lai Khe. Lai Khe's nicknames were usually Sherwood Forest or Rocket City I flew out of there quite a bit.
During the Vietnamization period, sometime in 1970, the ARVN's took over most of Lai Khe and moved their families into the perimeter bunkers. pretty strange to see kids & chickens running in and out when we crossed over the perimeter.

Welcome Home,


May 24, 2008, 09:00 PM
"... a double-barrel sawed off shotgun in the other..."

What my brother said he always WANTED to carry was a full auto, double barreled 12ga., belt fed, and be followd by a dedicated team of ammo bearers.

May 25, 2008, 12:25 AM
Did carry M16 & personal .45 auto first tour. 2nd tour aquirred M14 & same .45


May 25, 2008, 01:35 AM
M-60, CAR-15 and a Colt Trooper MK-lll, I never left NKP without them.
That and my "chicken plate".

May 25, 2008, 04:50 PM
I was at Phu Loi in 1969.

Dian, Phu Loi, Lai Khe, & Cu Chi were all on Hiway 13.

Just outside of Lai Khe, maybe a klick, the 1st Infantry Division had used Rome Plows and cut a 1st Inf. Div. Patch (Big Red One) into the jungle. This thing must have been a mile long, half mile wide, and could only be seen from the air.
One of our aviation companies, the 173rd Robin Hoods, was based out of Lai Khe. Lai Khe's nicknames were usually Sherwood Forest or Rocket City I flew out of there quite a bit.
During the Vietnamization period, sometime in 1970, the ARVN's took over most of Lai Khe and moved their families into the perimeter bunkers. pretty strange to see kids & chickens running in and out when we crossed over the perimeter.

Welcome Home,



Oh, yeah, I knew Phuloi too a bit, and definitely confirm The Big Red One cutting.
I really didn't finish the story. After going home for a while I found I was gonna' still be in the army so they let me extend to go back to RVN. When I looked at stateside duty after being in Vietnam there wasn't any choice as far as I was concerned. I had a very bad attitude for being in the states by then. So I got to chose a unit and I chose to be a gunner with D troop, 1/4th Cavalry, 11th ACR, 1st Infantry Div. who were working from Phuloi. Right across the runway from you, I'd guess, and you had the 1st Aviation Battalion, 1st Inf div next door, right? A bud of mine was crewchief in one of their C&C hueys is why I remember that so well. I'd walk across, or he would, from time to time.

I gunned from the slicks in D troop, 1/4th, maybe two months then a job came up that I wanted. Remember the big helicopter rearming point at Laikhe? Each company that used it was supposed to supply one guy to work there. I had known the previous D troop guy before and saw him in the company area with orders for DEROS is how I knew the slot was open, So I went into the 1st Sergeant and told him I wanted to go. (I'll never forget the look on his face when he said "You Do?" - scared lifer) Ended up spending my last month and a half in the lap of luxury at Laikhe, busting out rockets all morning to keep the bins full and walking down to the vil each afternoon to see all my honeys. LOL!

May 25, 2008, 04:58 PM
BTW, Sherwood Forest was what the Robin Hoods called their company area. It wasn't a nickname for Laikhe, but Rocket City definitely was.

I was first to get out to one of the Robin Hood's UH-1D's that had been slingloading a big empty wooden crate. I guess they wanted the wood to improve their hootch or something. Anyway, the box started oscillating, swinging, back and forth on the hook until it hit their tailrotor. They were only maybe 100 ft in the air so they went in hard. The huey burned instantly and all four guys were charcoal even by the time I got there. There was nothing anyone could do but watch them burn.

Remember something about that?

May 25, 2008, 07:36 PM
I don't remember that specific incident at Lai Khe. I remember a whole bunch other stuff tho. Out of Quan Loi, I watched a Chinook with a sling-load, go inverted & auger in - no survivers. Same problem, sling-load started oscillating and couldn't recover. I was always more scared of mechanical failure/Human error than I was ever scared of being shot.
Yep - I was in the 1st Aviation Brigade, 12th Aviation Group, 11th Aviation Battalion, 213th ASHC (The BlackCats). I was a 67A1F/67N20 gunner/crewchief on CH47C & Super C Chinooks. Flew in support of the 11th ACR many times. Altho we spent a lot of time bailing the 1st Cav. out of trouble. Some days working with the Australian Army out of Ham Tan. A lot of ARVN support also.
And yep - I was just across the active from you guys. We had the big double maintenance hangars 'cause Hooks are so big. If you ever pulled Bunker/perimeter guard, I was always on either bunker 15 or bunker 26.
Exciting times - again, Welcome Home.


May 25, 2008, 08:25 PM
You know what? I DID do some perimeter guarding at Phuloi, only a few times when I first went to the company and wasn't assigned to a ship. I don't remember any bunker numbers, in fact I don't think that I even knew that the perimeter bunkers at Phuloi HAD numbers but I guess it's typical of the quasi-stateside nature of the place.

BUT I was sleeping on top of one of the bunkers on the only night that I ever heard of Phuloi getting any incoming after Tet! I woke up on the ground, of course, but there was some stupid cement "curb" or something around the bunker and I'd landed on my chest on that thing. Turned out that I'd broken two ribs! F**K!!

The bunker was on your side of the flightline too because I hobbled. all doubled over, back to D troop across it. I remember some AH hollering at me to run and telling him as best I could to FO. That brought him to me I guess to take my name or something but when he saw that I was hurting he took me to the aid station there and they wrapped me up. Damn, I'd forgotten all about that whole thing until you mentioned guard at Phuloi.

Welcome home back, Bruce!

May 29, 2008, 02:44 AM
we were still using the M1 Garands

May 29, 2008, 01:12 PM
I'd go with what I was issued:

And try to pick up one of these:

May 29, 2008, 01:13 PM
Vern H. or any of you other guys that scrounged M14s in SEA, didn't you find the long rifle ungainly and difficult to maneuver in thick jungle?

May 29, 2008, 01:29 PM
I carried a Thompson and a 1911. Have a 1911, wish I had the Thompson.

May 29, 2008, 01:33 PM
ak47/delta elite 10mm

but id rather have an m60 and a platoon with the other two behind me

May 29, 2008, 01:36 PM
A Douglas A-1E Skyraider, loaded for bear, orbiting my position 24 hours a day.
Now THAT is personal protection!!

Me too. AD4N actually. You will need the radar at night :) Here I am in front of one; many years and more pounds ago than I care to remember :)
This belonged to a friend of mine. I spent lots of hours in this thing......

No the rockets bombs and tanks are not all correct for the AD, I borrowed those from a couple of other guys just for the photo.

The 20mm cannons were DEWATS from another Skyraider and the linked ammo is .50cal.

Hey I was 18, the details didn't matter.

What I wouldn't give to be able to wear a size medium flight suit again though.....

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